Browse Publications Technical Papers 2009-01-0363
2009-04-20

Automotive Global Collaborative Engineering Course 2009-01-0363

This paper describes the four year experience of a senior- and graduate-level technical elective course in mechanical engineering that engages the students in a global collaborative engineering design and product development project. This course is team-taught at Virginia Tech and Howard University in USA, the Technische Universität Darmstadt in Germany, Tecnológico de Monterrey in Mexico and Shiangai Jaoo Too University in China. The course employs state-of-the-art videoconference systems and hardware and software technologies that virtually reduce the distance between the universities, students, and faculty. The coordination, deployment, and implementation of tightly integrated technologies across multiple sites is particularly challenging in a university setting. Universities are independent organizations with differing policies and calendars; and, within each university, the networking, hardware, software, and support infrastructures are managed in a decentralized manner. This paper will therefore also describe how these organizational challenges were overcome to make the course a reality. Preliminary ongoing research to establish a common set of effective cross-cultural design practices will be also presented

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